Some planets out there in the Universe have such harsh conditions for humans that the more we look at them, the less we should doubt the existence of Hell. It even applies to our neighboring planet Venus, so there’s no wonder why the object is so luminous in the night sky.
But there are numerous other planets out there that could be considered ‘sisters’ of Venus – as they’re covered in lava and have surface temperatures that are reaching several hundreds of degrees Celsius. One recent proof is the K2-141b exoplanet that’s about the same size as Earth, and it captured the attention of astronomers due to its wild traits.
Magma ocean located beneath the surface
Scientists from McGill University, York University, and the Indian Institute of Science Education concluded with the help of computer simulations that the atmosphere and weather cycle of the K2-141b exoplanet are stranger than they expected. The space object features a magma ocean located 100 km beneath, both evaporation and precipitation of rocks, as well as supersonic winds that travel at speeds over 5000 km/hr.
Lead author Giang Nguyen, a Ph.D. student from the York University, declared:
The study is the first to make predictions about weather conditions on K2-141b that can be detected from hundreds of light years away with next-generation telescopes such as the James Webb Space Telescope,
The night side of the exoplanet experience temperatures of below 200 degrees Celsius. The dayside, on the other hand, reaches about 3000 degrees Celsius. K2-141b has such mind-boggling temperatures due to the fact that it’s too close to its host star. At such temperatures, rocks get vaporized on the exoplanet, thus creating a thin atmosphere in precise areas across the space object.
The study was published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. The James Webb Telescope will be deployed in October 2021, and we hope it will bring us more precious data about the K2-141b exoplanet.